FOND DU LAC — Fond du Lac police on Wednesday, September 30th announced the passing of retired K-9 “Grendel.”
Grendel was put to sleep Wednesday due to a serious and deteriorating health problem.
Officer Ryan Williams, Grendel’s partner, was able to take him for one last brief training exercise at Steinig Tal Kennels in rural Fond du Lac County — where the two spent so many years working and training together. After that exercise, Officer Williams took Grendel to a vet appointment and was by his side as he was put to sleep.
Grendel was then taken to Rienzi Cemetery in Fond du Lac, where he was buried alongside a number of other law enforcement K-9 officers.
Several members of the Fond du Lac Police Department joined Officer Williams and his family to support them and say their final goodbye.
Grendel was officially retired from his active K-9 status on April 8th, 2014 after a career with Officer Williams that began on April 1st, 2006.
Throughout their eight-year career together, Grendel and Officer Williams earned a number of commendations, and were responsible for a significant number of apprehensions, arrests and seizures of illegal drugs.
They are perhaps best known for their inspirational fight to survive and return to work after both were shot and critically injured during the attempted arrest of a sexual assault suspect in March 2011 — an incident that claimed the life of Fond du Lac Police Officer Craig Birkholz.
Below are a few of the noteworthy accomplishments by the team of Officer Williams/K-9 Grendel:
- Meritorious award for several successful K-9 tracks
- Tracking a hit-and-run suspect who was located laying in a field when temperatures were around -20
- The apprehension of five different suspects who were actively running/fleeing from officers — apprehensions that can save officers from injury/death that are all too common in foot pursuits of dangerous suspects
- Thousands of drug sniffs — many resulting in the seizures of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and meth
- Inspiring law enforcement officials and their families across the nation with their incredible fight to survive and return to work as an officer/K-9 team
“The entire city of Fond du Lac Police Department family was saddened to have to say a final goodbye to K-9 Grendel today, and he will be missed by all. Of course, this is obviously a very difficult day for Officer Williams and his family, and we ask that the community that had so strongly rallied behind them in their fight to survive and return to duty a few years ago once again keep their family in their thoughts and prayers,” Fond du Lac Police Chief Bill Lamb said.